I Remember

Wide-eyes in amber hues brimming with salty tears
Four years old in red ruffles and day of the week panties
Mama’s precious baby girl
Trembling, frozen with fear, cold and confused
Silenced, but I remember

Truth or dare on the trampoline
Triple dog five second French kiss or eat worms
Mama’s little daredevil
and innocent boys following the footsteps of their forefathers
Busted, I remember

Open window and moonlit shadows dancing on the wall
Thirteen and rebellious; Mama’s little wild child
“Everyone else is doing it. Don’t you love me?”
Pressured, I remember

Head down, tears flowing, pushing past the picket line
Fifteen and pregnant, Mama’s dirty whore
Cold steel forced inside me, life ripped from my womb
“MURDERER!” I remember

Strobe lights and rap music, twerking teenage dreams
Sixteen with nothing to lose, Mama’s party girl
Beer run – two guys in a Chevy truck looking for some fun
“Drink up baby girl.”
Room spinning, losing consciousness. I remember

Bright lights, bloodshot eyes and grunting,
hip bones pounding into supple flesh
Incoherent but coming to, Mama’s naive fool.
Struggling to scream and unable to move
Tossed curbside next to the trashcan, battered and used.
Damaged, I remember

Butterflies taking flight, head floating in the clouds
Young and reckless, making plans for the future
They said we’d never make it so we set out to prove them wrong
Independent and headstrong, Mama’s girl on the run.
Head over heels, I remember

Dimly lit room, cold gel smeared across my belly
fluttering of a tiny heartbeat, fear and joy intertwined
Mama’s gift from the heavens, I shall protect you with my life
I often dreamed of the day I would cradle you in my arms
My existence had a purpose, I remember

Blood dripping down trembling legs,
Blurry lights passing by in a frenzied pace
pain unimaginable as the room fades to black.
Floating between dimensions, struggling to find my way back.
Wings gifted, Mama’s little angel
Inconsolable, I remember

Silence shattered like broken glass
“Ms. Daigle, I’m afraid you may never bear children…”
A woman’s worth destroyed in thirteen syllables
Fertile soil now barren – hopeful heart destroyed and abandoned
Mama said it was for the best, I remember

Consumed by heartache, weighted by grief and despair
I sought love in the form of flying fists and rage
Black eyes and body bruises, Mama taught me well
I deserved it, I remember

Surgical steel piercing my vein
Injecting poison to numb my pain
Mama’s little junkie
There was no escape, I remember.

Body gone limp, heartbeat slowing
Discarded by a coward, left there overdosing
Silent screams as tears rolled down my cheeks
Vomit staining sweat soaked sheets
I am fading and Mama can’t save me now
but I was born a warrior, I remembered

I begged God for mercy and fought my way back to the light
Never again will I be swallowed by the darkness of the night
I am immortal, and I remember everything.

-Dena M. Daigle, 2018

 

This piece was inspired by a beautiful piece written by Rachel Finch that moved me. Her words helped me find the strength to release those that have been locked inside of me. It is a testament to her strength and resilience which we can all appreciate. Rachel’s piece is featured below. 44710536_2209525525995879_526698698571251712_n.jpg

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I Will Not Write Your Obituary

Heroin addiction is a destroyer of the human spirit, completely obliterating not only the heart of the addict, but the hearts of those who love them as well.  The harsh reality of this cyclic battle is that some souls simply cannot be saved no matter how hard you try to help them, or how much love you offer them. We can’t walk the path for anyone but ourselves, and there is no way to help someone who doesn’t want to be helped. – Dena M. Daigle

This is a piece dedicated to my sister. I tried with everything in me to make this a spoken word piece, but I could barely get out 5 lines before I broke down in tears. Wherever you are sister, just know that you are loved and I hope you can find yourself one day.

 An Open Letter to My Sister 

I reached out to you with three simple words,
“How could you?”
And your response was “I need help”
But how many times are we supposed to save you when you won’t even save yourself.
You said “Fuck help. Fuck life. I give up”
Never giving another thought to the children who need you;
nor the mother and sister who would succeed you.
You told me that I would never see you again;
and I’m not even sure how I’m supposed to feel about that.
Is it a ploy for attention, or a cry for help?
I don’t know,
because most don’t give a warning before they kill themselves.
And you have lied so much to anyone who would listen.
They obliviously cater to your bullshit while you feed your addiction.
You leave devastation in your wake;
a winding trail of shattered hearts as long as the river Nile,
robbing piggy banks and leaving bones scattered on the shores of denial.
But you tell me “Just remember that I love you.”
As if those words could ever ease the pain of losing my sister;
my own flesh and blood
the girl I would give my own life to save.
Then you block my messages and calls and vanish without a trace.
How dare you lay down your sword at my feet as if I’m supposed to end this battle for you.
How dare you lay your burdens on my fragile heart as if I haven’t suffered too.
I will not clean up the endtrails you recklessly leave behind.
I will not hide your rotting corpse from the wolves that come to dine.
I will not place you gently into the river trying to save your soul.
And I will not write your fucking obituary before your body turns cold.
But if you reach out to me, I will answer your call.
I will sit with you in the gutter and we will write graffiti on the walls.
I will write you into poetry of painted skies and butterflies
and you will laugh at me.
You will think I have gone completely mad
unless the only hue on the palette I’ve chosen is black.
But I would do it anyway because I just want to see you crawl out of your cocoon.
I want to shed my light on your darkness and guide you to brighter days.
I want to see your babies smile and seek solace in your embrace.
I will stay at your bedside and watch over you as you sleep,
and I will help you slay your demons on the days you are too weak.
I will roll up my sleeves and grab a broom and we will clean this mess together;
but I will not let you sweep it under the rug again
nor let you decide which storms we have to weather.
I will not watch you destroy yourself any longer and tear our family apart;
and if that means you hate me,
I will just have to keep you safe in my heart.
But I will not write your obituary.
I will just love you from afar.
-Dena M. Daigle ©️ 2018

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